23 Aug 16

Buemi tops opening day of pre-season testing

Sebastien Buemi (Renault e.Dams) topped the timesheets on day one of pre-season testing in preparation for the defense of his Formula E title.

The reigning champion clocked a 1:30.143s in the closing moments of the session, two-tenths shy of the Formula E lap record at Donington Park set by Lucas di Grassi last year - 1:29.920s.

The Renault e.Dams driver was just over seven-tenths clear of Nick Heidfeld and Lucas di Grassi (ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport) in third, with the pair once again battling it out for top honours following their season-long dual last year.

Sebastien Buemi, Renault e.Dams, said: “I mean it’s always very early to know where you are and whether you’ve done a good enough job but clearly the car is an evolution of what we had last year. Hopefully it will be enough to stay at the front and fight for more wins and titles.”

Sam Bird (DS Virgin Racing) was the first to venture out on to the track and eventually ended the day in third, accumulating a total of 28 laps.

Two-time ePrix winner Jerome D’Ambrosio (Faraday Future Dragon Racing) ended the session in fifth, over a second adrift of Buemi.

Alex Lynn, on testing duties for Jaguar Racing, put in an impressive performance on the team’s first appearance at an official collective test in sixth.

The new arrival at Mahindra Racing, Felix Rosenqvist also showed the pace of the M3Electro in seventh, followed by Daniel Abt (ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport) a place further back.

Felix Rosenqvist, Mahindra Racing, said: “At Donington we aren’t really trying to find the right set-up, you just want to check that the car works and that the reliability is good. From my side I just need to start preparing as much as possible for a race weekend because I’ve driven the car quite a lot now but it would be good if I could start getting used to some lift and coast.”

Also in action for Jaguar Racing was Adam Carroll who ended the session in ninth ahead of WTCC champion Jose Maria Lopez (DS Virgin Racing) in 10th.

Click the link to download a selection of hi-res images from day one of testing - https://we.tl/gHUqhweRfx

Formula E collective test session - Donington Park (Day 1)

  1. Sebastien Buemi, Renault e.Dams, 1:30.143s
  2. Nick Heidfeld, Mahindra Racing, +0.751s
  3. Lucas di Grassi, ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport, +0.804s
  4. Sam Bird, DS Virgin Racing, +0.849s
  5. Jerome D’Ambrosio, Faraday Future Dragon Racing, +1.060s
  6. Alex Lynn, Jaguar Racing, +1.266s
  7. Felix Rosenqvist, Mahindra Racing, +1.420s
  8. Daniel Abt, ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport, +1.569s
  9. Adam Carroll, Jaguar Racing, +1.574s
  10. Jose Maria Lopez, DS Virgin Racing, +1.590s
  11. Nico Prost, Renault e.Dams, +2.166s
  12. Loic Duval, Faraday Future Dragon Racing, +2.917s
  13. Robin Frijns, Andretti Formula E, +2.919s
  14. Ma Qing Hua, Techeetah, +3.004s
  15. Antonio Felix da Costa, Andretti Formula E, +3.109s
  16. Nelson Piquet Jr, NextEV NIO, +3.141s
  17. Stephane Sarrazin, Venturi Formula E, +3.144s
  18. Maro Engel, Venturi Formula E, +3.977s